Playmobil train parts compatibility.

James Day

James Day

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#21
James, do you mean that the camera fits in the train? Thanks for mentioning it.

I think there are some single ended LGB motors. Here's an example:
https://www.trainworld.com/manufacturers/model-train-specials/motor-with-long-shaft-62205/
There seem to be some here too: http://www.allaboutlgb.com/lgb replacement motors.html

I'm not sure if it would work on battery power, or go slower or something.
I hear that the plastic gears of some playmobil RC trains can wear out if they pull too much stuff, or if kids push them on the tracks, so I'm mostly interested to know if LGB or someone else makes a compatible replacement gear. I wonder if a 3d printed version would last. Maybe an LGB motor and matching LGB gear could be made to fit.

playmofire, I hope you will share the results of your testing.

-bbbb
Totally agree with you there. Be interesting to see what Gordon comes up with.

I think the voltage difference will be the killer though.

Yes the spy camera fits in the square pockets on both sides of the modern RC loco's cab. You could fit two if you like!

The cameras are hard to find now, but don't let PM fool you the do work on Windows 10. There have been a number of threads about them on GSC - one tells you how to do it - and I have tried it.

Off to the curse of the drinking classes now....

James
 
James Day

James Day

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6 May 2012
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#22
I have a search running on e-bay: 'Playmobil 3958' I have this running in the vain hope that this brings me a fifth mustard yellow grey roofed Wild West type coach....

Today the search e-mail brought me three very exotic items indeed:

A 3958 loco Cow Catcher/Pilot complete with cow skull for $35

A 3958 loco chimney complete with two tone band for $38

A black 3958 loco cab roof for a mere $75

These are all Buy It Now Prices - All plus postage of course... Which is sadly another $40! Maybe if you bought all three, you could get a deal?

I think the chimney is particularly good value. One of mine is turned from Acetal by a skilled chum. He also made the top half for another one. To be fair if you had a 3958 without a cab roof you would probably pay 75 USD too!

Any takers?

James
 
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-bbbb

-bbbb

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#23
I'd like all of those pieces to convert a 4017 as they seem to be compatble, but not for those prices. I don't see those as value prices at all. Playmobil prices on Ebay seem to be inflated in general. I think a lot of sellers see the 'buy it now' prices of items that have been listed for months with no buyers, and then assume that must be the going price. What matters is how much someone is willing to pay, and not so much how much dreamers list things for. I saw a steaming Mary chimney for $15 listed twice with no buyers, while the same thing is more often listed for more than twice as much (also with no buyers obviously). I see the steaming mary roof often listed for $80(with no buyers), but I ended up with one I didn't need when I got a random lot of stuff for less than $4 plus shipping. I've seen 4017/4019/4021 engines listed for $80-$150(with no buyers), and I very recently got a complete one for $36 ($50 if you include shipping), and there were about 10 watchers not buying it at that price. RC track switches are listed on ebay for $20 but you can get them for about $12 directly from playmobil. The grey hair tonsured monk is usually listed for $20+ on ebay, but I just got some from playmobil directly for $2 for the monk and 50 cents for the cape. Those red brake handles are 20 cents each from playmobil directly, but $2-$6 on ebay. It would be better for everyone if the price inflation stopped; there would be more buyers, more sales, less re-listings, less wasted space on ebay, etc.

-bbbb
 
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James Day

James Day

Guano Corner Rly - Runs weekly - Guano permitting
6 May 2012
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Warwickshire
#24
I'd like all of those pieces to convert a 4017 as they seem to be compatble, but not for those prices. I don't see those as value prices at all. Playmobil prices on Ebay seem to be inflated in general. I think a lot of sellers see the 'buy it now' prices of items that have been listed for months with no buyers, and then assume that must be the going price. What matters is how much someone is willing to pay, and not so much how much dreamers list things for. I saw a steaming Mary chimney for $15 listed twice with no buyers, while the same thing is more often listed for more than twice as much (also with no buyers obviously). I see the steaming mary roof often listed for $80(with no buyers), but I ended up with one I didn't need when I got a random lot of stuff for less than $4 plus shipping. I've seen 4017/4019/4021 engines listed for $80-$150(with no buyers), and I very recently got a complete one for $36 ($50 if you include shipping), and there were about 10 watchers not buying it at that price. RC track switches are listed on ebay for $20 but you can get them for about $12 directly from playmobil. The grey hair tonsured monk is usually listed for $20+ on ebay, but I just got some from playmobil directly for $2 for the monk and 50 cents for the cape. Those red brake handles are 20 cents each from playmobil directly, but $2-$6 on ebay. It would be better for everyone if the price inflation stopped; there would be more buyers, more sales, less re-listings, less wasted space on ebay, etc.

-bbbb
Well done on your research. As you say if PM direct still have it, if is a good place to start.

Steaming Mary was in production for a very long time (8 years?) and was very popular, so those bits will come up worldwide, quite often and over a wide price range.

Both the 3958 and the later RC version 4035 were each only sold for a year and were seemingly aimed almost entirely at the US market. In my view they are the rarest of all PM locos.

I have been waiting for a fifth 3958 coach for years, but the only ones i have seen are being listed at £120 or so. Far more than I am prepared to pay.

I stand by my assertion that the chimney at least is good value as in 18 years of collecting and following PM - these parts have never been listed before. (See how much the standard European chimney goes for if you can find one.)

Secondly, some years ago when I acquired an incomplete 3958 loco without a chimney and had one made out of machineable nylon (Acetal), I reckon it cost me around that sum.

The rarity of the 3958 and 4035 parts means if you want them, those are the sort of costs you either pay these days, or you go without. I am still without my fifth coach!

The prices of a complete 3958 set will make your eyes water too. They frequently come up, mainly in the states, although as you say, just because the price is asked, it doesn't mean they achieve it!

Yes E-bay does tend to push prices up and it does the Keynesian thing of the prices quickly reflecting rarity and demand. However, I couldn't imagine that I could have got my collection without it.

I have done deals with people in UK, France, Germany, Mexico, United States and Spain over the years. We have also sometimes helped each other out by swapping bits.

If all I had bought was stuff I found locally or even through traders at shows, I would have a very limited collection indeed.

Be interesting to see if these bits sell, or are re-listed?

James
 
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-bbbb

-bbbb

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#25
You have a point that they are from a rarer set. The 4019/4017/4021 smokestacks seem to be listed regularly for about $20, so the cost of the smokestack is not entirely surprising in light of that, but $75 for a roof still seems a bit much. I thought I've seen all of these listed before for about the same price within the last few months.

-bbbb
 
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James Day

James Day

Guano Corner Rly - Runs weekly - Guano permitting
6 May 2012
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#26
You have a point that they are from a rarer set. The 4019/4017/4021 smokestacks seem to be listed regularly for about $20, so the cost of the smokestack is not entirely surprising in light of that, but $75 for a roof still seems a bit much. I thought I've seen all of these listed before for about the same price within the last few months.

-bbbb
Thanks for that. My search has certainly never picked them up before, but I guess that depends on how they were described and where the vendor was prepared to send them?

If you ever spot anything like this, feel free to share it here, after you have bought what bits you want of course!

This has made me think how easy would it have been for PM to have sold a 'Westernising Kit' - those three bits, two suitable western train crew figures and a set of stickers? (maybe five of those mini log stacks too 30 05 8570 as shown in the thread Playmobil Ideas - after all it is going to be a wood burner!)

It would have cost next to nothing really and any RC or track powered 0-4-0 could become a desirable US style loco.

Such a kit if it had been sold would seriously undermine the silly prices sought today!

Just an idle thought!

James
 
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-bbbb

-bbbb

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#27
If you ever spot anything like this, feel free to share it here, after you have bought what bits you want of course!

This has made me think how easy would it have been for PM to have sold a 'Westernising Kit' - those three bits, two suitable western train crew figures and a set of stickers? (maybe five of those mini log stacks too 30 05 8570 as shown in the thread Playmobil Ideas - after all it is going to be a wood burner!)
It would have cost next to nothing really and any RC or track powered 0-4-0 could become a desirable US style loco.
Is there a section of the forum where people could list the bits they're looking for so others could keep their eyes peeled for local deals and such? If I see a deal on that yellow passenger car I'd let you know as it's not something I'm wanting. I'd prefer another brown one with an orange roof.

The westernizing kit based on the 3958 parts is a great idea and is one of the things I would like most for my trains. Perhaps someone could convince Walter Turner to suggest it to the Playmobil people he deals with. I imagine it would be best suited for the direct service catalog. But if it was not hard to incorporate old parts like that into something newer along the lines of the 5549, people would probably still buy it just to get those old 3958 parts. If they made a steam punk theme to go along with the steam punk mystery figure they made, they could easily incorporate some of those parts into some sort of non-train yet train-ish vehicle (Maybe a boat, truck, or flying vehicle that looks like a train?). Or how about using them on a dwarven steam tank for the new dwarf theme? I'm still hoping for a goblin theme with zombie uppers on dwarf legs; an underground train-ish thing could work there too.

-bbbb
 
P

playmofire

Registered
23 Oct 2010
6,342
683
North Yorks
#28
Is there a section of the forum where people could list the bits they're looking for so others could keep their eyes peeled for local deals and such? If I see a deal on that yellow passenger car I'd let you know as it's not something I'm wanting. I'd prefer another brown one with an orange roof.

The westernizing kit based on the 3958 parts is a great idea and is one of the things I would like most for my trains. Perhaps someone could convince Walter Turner to suggest it to the Playmobil people he deals with. I imagine it would be best suited for the direct service catalog. But if it was not hard to incorporate old parts like that into something newer along the lines of the 5549, people would probably still buy it just to get those old 3958 parts. If they made a steam punk theme to go along with the steam punk mystery figure they made, they could easily incorporate some of those parts into some sort of non-train yet train-ish vehicle (Maybe a boat, truck, or flying vehicle that looks like a train?). Or how about using them on a dwarven steam tank for the new dwarf theme? I'm still hoping for a goblin theme with zombie uppers on dwarf legs; an underground train-ish thing could work there too.

-bbbb
There is a wanted forum here:

https://www.gscalecentral.net/forums/things-wanted.33/

On the westernising parts and the 5549 set, I may have misunderstood what you mean, but this set is only a push along model and much smaller than the track-powered and R/C locos.

In Playmobil terms, sales of the trains were probably never very big (Walter Turner will correct me if I'm wrong) and so such a kit would be uneconomic to produce. Maybe 3D printing by an enthusiast is the way to go.

As for the future of Playmobil trains, there isn't one; no more are to be made.
 
James Day

James Day

Guano Corner Rly - Runs weekly - Guano permitting
6 May 2012
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#29
Is there a section of the forum where people could list the bits they're looking for so others could keep their eyes peeled for local deals and such? If I see a deal on that yellow passenger car I'd let you know as it's not something I'm wanting. I'd prefer another brown one with an orange roof.

The westernizing kit based on the 3958 parts is a great idea and is one of the things I would like most for my trains. Perhaps someone could convince Walter Turner to suggest it to the Playmobil people he deals with. I imagine it would be best suited for the direct service catalog. But if it was not hard to incorporate old parts like that into something newer along the lines of the 5549, people would probably still buy it just to get those old 3958 parts. If they made a steam punk theme to go along with the steam punk mystery figure they made, they could easily incorporate some of those parts into some sort of non-train yet train-ish vehicle (Maybe a boat, truck, or flying vehicle that looks like a train?). Or how about using them on a dwarven steam tank for the new dwarf theme? I'm still hoping for a goblin theme with zombie uppers on dwarf legs; an underground train-ish thing could work there too.

-bbbb
Wow, you do have an in-depth knowledge of the PM range!

From time to time PM do reissue old models as part of the Direct Service range - The Wild West station, water tower and wind pump are examples.

However all these models are self contained and my hypothetical Westernising Set sadly isn't, as it needs an Old Time Train tank loco which has been out of production since 2005 (need to check).

Yes these items will fit the earlier track powered tank locos, but not anything else, such as the modern diesel.

For that reason. I fear it is likely to remain a dream!

Thanks for what you said about the yellow coach. There is also a wanted and a for sale section here which you see on the Forums Page.

James
 
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James Day

James Day

Guano Corner Rly - Runs weekly - Guano permitting
6 May 2012
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#30
There is a wanted forum here:

https://www.gscalecentral.net/forums/things-wanted.33/

On the westernising parts and the 5549 set, I may have misunderstood what you mean, but this set is only a push along model and much smaller than the track-powered and R/C locos.

In Playmobil terms, sales of the trains were probably never very big (Walter Turner will correct me if I'm wrong) and so such a kit would be uneconomic to produce. Maybe 3D printing by an enthusiast is the way to go.

As for the future of Playmobil trains, there isn't one; no more are to be made.
Gordon,

You make some very interesting points there.

3D printing could indeed solve a lot of the parts shortages, but it depends on someone with the skills being interested. I have bought some Shapeways bits for LGB and they were good, but not over cheap.

Given that PM must have spent a lot on the 3rd Generation RC loco and all that went with it, do you think that the decision to dump trains was based upon the lack of commercial success of that model?

I didn't particularly like the mechanism, but the self contained final drive could have easily been used on other models. The quality of the parts used and indeed the motor, struck me as cheaper than the 1st or 2nd generation models too.

Maybe I am just an optimist, but I was hoping that they would make some Wild West stuff with light and sound and derivation of that mech.....

Dreaming again I guess?

James
 
-bbbb

-bbbb

Registered
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#31
/
On the westernising parts and the 5549 set, I may have misunderstood what you mean, but this set is only a push along model and much smaller than the track-powered and R/C locos.
The fact that 5549 was a self contained push along set was my point. They could make use of the old western train parts in stand alone sets in a similar vein to the 5549 which was not requiring electronics, and did not require the use of tracks, or other expensive infrastructure which limits buyers. This is why I put forth a few ideas just after that in which something like that could be done, where there could be vehicles which look train-ish and yet are not actually trains requiring infrastructure or electronics. They already have the molds for the old western train parts, so I would imagine it shouldn't cost so much to pump out some more pieces for a kit sold in a bag via DS. They've sold many other non-stand-alone accessory sets before.

-bbbb
 
-bbbb

-bbbb

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#33
I need some advice. I recently purchased a 4034, and I want to convert it to RC. I've seen some examples of conversions in another thread. I understand that the tender may need to be modified to make room. But I'm wondering, what would be the best RC motor block to use? I'd also like to add a light similar to what was done in another thread. Do you have any other tips for the conversion of the 4034 to RC with a light?

-bbbb
 
James Day

James Day

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#34
I used a standard PM 1st generation RC block, although a 2nd gen one could be used instead if the sprung lighting take off was removed.

The 6v supply off the battery was taken forward to the loco by an umbilical with plugs and sockets. The Headlamp was modified as shown in the thread Playmobil ideas.

As the RC motor block is single axle drive a skilled engineer chim replaced the side rods with flat brass strip so that both wheels still turned. By changing the rods we were able to leave the tender chassis much as supplied. If we had kept the plastic side rods the chassis would have needed the frames moving apart which we decided was too diificult.

The tender chassis was modified to allow the battery to be inserted and removed. The rear coupling also needed modifying as the long RC mech fouled the anchoring point. The alternative approach was to extend the chassis backwards but we did not need to do this.

If I was doing it again I would probably add a supporting bracket under the battery box to help keep the rear buffer beam stiff, but this only matters if you are hauling long and heavy trains.

James
 
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Xav204

Xav204

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Marseille FRANCE
#35
In my case I used Playmobil RC motor.
I had to move apart the sides of the chassis ( but I kept them )
in order to make room for the plastic side rods because I hadn't the good idea from James
( and I was not able to create new rods )
I could add pictures if needed
 
-bbbb

-bbbb

Registered
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#36
I could add pictures if needed
I probably should have brought this up in the 'playmobil ideas' thread. James's pictures there are very helpful in this instance, but I would like to see more detail on how the tender was dealt with. It would be interesting to see how both of you dealt with the side rods, and how room was made for the battery. It would also be interesting to see updates on how Xav repairs the 4034 he recently purchased.

-bbbb
 
James Day

James Day

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#37
Thank you for your kind words.

I will sort out some images - however my chum is a skilled engineer and it took him two goes to get the rods spot on.

Therefore, Xav's method is your best bet unless you really fancy a lot of anguish!

To allow the battery box in and out we just cut away the rear left portion of the side frames (as seen from above).

The other issue to tackle is fixing the rear coupling - The mk1 and mk2 RC chassis will both fill the space fully. We toyed with extending the chassis but my chum Martin engineered a solution - Xav- how did you tackle this?

James
 
James Day

James Day

Guano Corner Rly - Runs weekly - Guano permitting
6 May 2012
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#38
Pictures:
93186_54a586d6b2cbdeee3711a2747d2083c1.jpg
93187_156ec5088ef6fbf379f9ad48a22f74e2.jpg
93188_f4646c3117e31fb6c585bdd035d4a833.jpg


What I had forgotten is that the sideframes were shortened on each side at the buffer beam end.

I hope the image shows how little clearance there is between the metal rods at the exisiting side frames. This is why i reccommend Xav's approach.

Finally - We should have added a re-inforcing plate under the battery box to help secure the rear buffer beam, but it has never hauled a heavy enough train to get me worried it might break! (so far!)

Good luck!
 
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Xav204

Xav204

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#39
Wonderful work James, very brilliant :clap: :clap: :clap:
Sorry I just added my pics ( to convert SM to RC ) in the other thread "Playmobil ideas"

I like your approach because you didn't have to cut a lot of things
( if only I had known how to replace these rods which make me crazy each time I convert to RC )
I think it is the best way to do

I removed the ties at the front of the block, then it is closed at the maximum of the front of the frame
so I could keep the coupling like it was
( I was afraid to lose it with too many wagons... )
The re-inforcing plate under the battery box to help secure the rear buffer beam is very impressive work,
with lot of finesse and very discreet . GREAT ! :clap: :clap:
 
Xav204

Xav204

Registered
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#40
I probably should have brought this up in the 'playmobil ideas' thread. James's pictures there are very helpful in this instance, but I would like to see more detail on how the tender was dealt with. It would be interesting to see how both of you dealt with the side rods, and how room was made for the battery. It would also be interesting to see updates on how Xav repairs the 4034 he recently purchased.

-bbbb
Unfortunately, I couldn't start yet to repair the second 4034 I just bought
Currently I'm working about another caboose
and I would like to finish soon
because 4034 and others are waiting ....